Pomegranates are one of the most sought after fruitsand one of the most versatile. This unusual fruit, with its brightly colored arils or sacs filled with sweet but tart juice, has become widely popular in the United States. With its unique, delicious flavor, it’s easy to understand why. Likewise, the pomegranate stands out among the winter seasonal fruits. After all, its bold, rich flavor is perfect for many winter dishes.

A Seasonal Fruit

Pomegranates are fall and winter fruits, and we usually see them scattered amongst other fruits and veggies in the iconic cornucopia around Thanksgiving. Or, they may show up alongside pine boughs and mistletoe around Christmas time. They’re also a big part of the Jewish New Year celebration, Rosh Hashanah. 

Known for their vivid color and being a very healthy superfood, pomegranates are some of the best fruits in season during the winter months. Due to being a seasonal fruit and their limited availabilitycoupled with the effort it takes to juice a pomegranatethese unique fruits can be more costly. However, the pomegranate is full of healthy antioxidants, vitamins, and a wealth of other health benefits! Below are a few ways to put pomegranate in the spotlight on your winter dishes this season. 

1. Crunchy Winter Vegetable Garden Salad

Pomegranate juice is great for a tangy vinaigrette dressing, but the sweet seeds make a flavorful and colorful addition when sprinkled on top of salads on their ownand add a juicy pop. The bright, jewel-like red of the fruit stands out against dark leafy greens like spinach or kale. Pomegranate pairs well with other fruits, such as buttery sweet pears, dried cranberries, or crunchy sweet apple slices. Bleu cheese crumbles add to the bright festivity of the plate, and toasted walnuts go well with pomegranate, as well as offering an extra textural crunch. A sprinkle of juicy pomegranate makes a festive winter addition to any menu. 

2. Roasted Vegetables

Under high heat, the subtle char of roasted vegetables and the sweet-tartness of pomegranate arils are a match made in heavenand the perfect comfort food for wintertime. The sweetly nutty flavor of butternut squash, creamy goat cheese, and roasted pumpkin combines with pomegranate for a delicious taste of fall. Alternatively, roasting squash, sweet potatoes, carrots, parsnips, and onions, and their medley of earthy fall flavors can be sweetly enhanced by adding pomegranate into the mix. 

3. Pomegranate Stew

Cooler months are pomegranate season, as well as the season for hot, hearty meals. Fesenjan or Fesenjoon combines two superfoods with great nutritional benefits: pomegranates and walnuts. For the heart of the dish, simply simmer tender chicken, turkey, or small meatballs in the sweet-but-tangy pomegranate concentrate and walnut paste.  The walnuts add a delicious nutty flavor to the sour-sweet flavor of the pomegranate. All of the ingredients create a rich flavoring that can you can serve over rice and top it off with jeweled pomegranate arils. 

4. Desserts

Pomegranates go well in almost any sweet recipe, from zesty orange and pomegranate muffins to bittersweet dark chocolate tarts. In Mexico, one spicy but delicious dessert pairs pomegranate pudding with orange curd in a chocolate trifle. A hint of cinnamon and red chile in a decadent brownie make for a cozy Christmas-time treatperfect for warding off the cold.

5. Cocktails and Refreshments

One way you might see pomegranates year-round is in grenadine, which base is made of pomegranate juice. You can also use this superfruit in many ways to make a mouthwatering cocktail. Pomegranate’s tanginess with the light sweetness of tequilaalong with a little zesty lime or a pinch of cinnamon to give it a spicy kickmake a festive punch that can be served hot or cold. The ruby-red juice is crisp, sweet, and light in a martini. Also, a citrusy orange and pomegranate juice make an ideal pairing in a mimosa, too.

Want to make your winter dishes more festive? Shop pomegranates and other wholesale fruits and vegetables at Agri today.